As a critic, writer, potter and educator, Emmanuel Cooper’s contribution to the world of ceramics is hugely significant.
As a founder Trustee on the Board of The Making, Emmanuel made a unique contribution to establishing the purpose of the organisation, which is to transform people’s lives by inspiring them to engage with the art of making. For ten years he gave The Making his unstinting support, advising on the development of the organisation’s participation and learning philosophy, as well as its financial and organisational objectives. His wisdom, warmth and generosity of spirit will be very sadly missed by all.
As a potter, Emmanuel’s first solo show was in 1968. He continued to exhibit regularly his vessels which are characterised by an interest in marrying relatively classic forms to vibrantly coloured glazes and unusual textures. Yet he also had other interests: he was a founding editor with Eileen Lewenstein, of the highly respected magazine Ceramic Review, and from 1996 he was its sole editor; he curated exhibitions, wrote books, was Visiting Professor at the Royal College of Art and was awarded an OBE for his services to the arts. However in spite of his writing and teaching activities, Emmanuel remained at heart a potter, saying, ‘The head, heart and hand literally and metaphorically come together when I'm creating.’
In late 2008 he gave the following interview to The Making.